Ripe Aloe

Been a weird series of days, or nights, but I was feeling a bit better, noticed that Fear and Loathing was back on Netflix, and decided to write this.


I was clean. That’s why my eyes were bulging and my hair, that little bit that was left of it, was clinging to my forehead and I didn’t want to adjust it because that would necessitate a hand washing. It’s funny how the symptoms of sobriety, of being clean, for a drug user are the same symptoms by which someone might suspect someone of using drugs. That’s because, when it comes to the disease of drug addiction, they’ve got it all backwards; the drugs are the medicine to cure it. Taking them away is like taking a burn victim off antibiotics and expecting the infection to go away.

Have you ever looked at a nice, ripe, plump aloe plant and wanted to bite into it? It’s basically a tiny agave plant, right? I felt that urge as I filled my bottles for the night but fought it off just long enough to notice a blemish on one leaf – leaf? – that disuaged my appetite.

The fuckin’ headache and pupils that were either half or double their normal diameter, the inability to either sleep or wake, the once-in-a-while sneezes that sent a heavy chill down your entire body for a split-second, exciting all hair follicles.

But maybe that was just the point. Maybe I thought I was clean but the unclean side still existed, taking over my body during those hour-long spurts of sleep I got during the night and dosing up. And that was the problem, who know what goddamned shit I was feeding myself?

That was absurd of course, though, the kind of shit that can only exist in fiction. Split personalities and whatnot. They weren’t real, right? I was clean, pure and simple, and this was just the way reality existed for all the squares. I guess I just had never noticed it before.

I set the bottles down and looked around my room, taking a tally. I got the water, the tea – both kinds – the liquid palate cleanser and both solid versions, around six liters of water, the capsules for now and later, the bags of the shit I clung onto as my one hope of reaching sleep and the receptacle for using it, the tablespoon, the homemade funnel with three staples and a few bits of tape holding it together, and the little bottle of the stuff that made it taste just slightly better, or at least just slightly not as bad.

Was that sobriety?

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